Dear CLA Families,

It was a busy week and this upcoming week is shaping up to be the same. Our winter session of Saturday Academy is up and running and our basketball teams are playing every weekend! This past weekend, both the girls and boys brought home wins. Below is the weekly chart with CLA updates, please reach out with any questions.

Academic Updates
  • Progress reports were sent home on Friday. Please review your child’s grades and discuss next steps with him/her. Then, sign the progress report so your child can return it to his/her crew leader on Monday for a habits grade. If you have any questions, please reach out to the subject-area teacher or write a note on the progress report along with your signature.
  • Visit to sign up for student-led conferences Feb. 14-15. Sign up early to make sure you get a time that works for you!
  • The following tests/quizzes are scheduled for next week:
    • Monday – 7th English Ch. 1-6 quiz, 7th social studies Renaissance people/places quiz
    • Wednesday – 8th math
  • Our practice Next Generation Assessments state tests will take place on Feb. 12-14. These tests give our students practice state testing expectations, just like an athlete or musician would rehearse for a game or concert. They also provide our teachers with important data on student mastery so they can focus in on what your child needs before the state tests in April and May. Here is the schedule:
    • Monday, Feb. 12 – English practice NGA  (all grades)
    • Tuesday, Feb. 13 – Math practice NGA (all grades)
    • Wednesday, Feb. 14 – Science practice NGA (8th grade), mid-year social studies exam (6th and 7th grades)
  • Volunteers needed in English class! We would love to have parents come in as guest readers for Wonder (6th), To Kill a Mockingbird (7th), and Night (8th). We’ve already had a few parents come in, and it has been fantastic! If you would like to be a guest reader in class, please e-mail the teachers: Ms. Spade (6th grade –, Ms. Clarke (7th grade –, and Ms. Craine (8th grade –
  • We are so proud of our scholars for their outstanding performance on our winter MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) assessments! Our scholars take these nationally normed tests in the fall, winter, and spring to measure growth in reading and math (check back next week for the math growth percentages!
    • In 6th grade, 70% of students met their growth goals in reading.
    • In 7th grade, 64% of students met their growth goals in reading.
    • In 8th grade, 71% of students met their growth goals in reading.

Your child’s MAP report will be shared with you at conferences Feb. 14-15. Our reading growth was the highest middle school in the Breakthrough network! Special congratulations to Ms. Jebelean’s eighth-grade crew, who had the highest average growth in the whole school for both reading and math!

  • Seventh grade did an amazing job on their Black History Month presentations on Friday – check CLA’s Facebook page ( for pictures! Save the date for our eighth- and sixth-grade Black History Month presentations. Scholars across all three grade levels will research a significant figure and then present dressed up as the subject of their research. Parents are invited in to the presentations in any block (times below), but are encouraged to come during their child’s block if possible!

o   Friday, Feb. 9 – 8th grade in Mrs. Summers’s research and presentation class

§  Block 2 = 8-8:30, block 3 = 8:40-9:10, block 4 = 10-10:30, block 5 = 10:40-11:10, block 6 = 12:20-12:50

o   Wednesday, Feb. 28 – 6th grade  in Ms. Smemo’s social studies class

§  Block 1 = 8:15-9, block 2 = 9:30-10:15, block 4 = 12:45-1:30, block 5 = 2-2:45

Culture Updates
  • On Friday, February 9, Wesley Fluellen, a former NBA player, will speak to our students at community meeting. Please join us at 9:15!
Fieldwork Opportunities On Thursday, Feb. 8, from 11-12, students in Ms. Clarke’s English class will visit Case Western Reserve University for a tour of their basketball facilities and Q&A with their men’s basketball team. This is fieldwork from their literature circles novel, The Crossover, which was read by 1/3 of the grade. If you would like to join us, please be at CLA by 10:45 a.m., or you can meet us at the Adelbert Gymnasium at 11 a.m.


On Friday, Feb. 9, at 12:15 p.m., students in Ms. Spade’s English class will video chat with a young adult who has Treacher Collins syndrome, a craniofacial condition that the main character of their current novel, Wonder, has. If you would like to join us for the video chat, please plan to be there from 12:15-12:45. (This video chat was originally scheduled for Monday, Feb. 5, but has been rescheduled for Friday.)


CLA has reserved tickets for a matinee performance of “Darius & Twig” at Playhouse Square at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 2. We invite all parents to attend the 60-minute show with their child/children! CLA will provide tickets and transportation; if you are interested, please RSVP to the main office by Thursday, February 15. We will leave CLA at 9:30 and return at approximately 11:30 a.m. Due to the nature of the play, no younger siblings are permitted to attend. Here is a description of the play:

Darius writes. Twig runs. Both are really good, and their talents could win them college scholarships. But these two 16-year-old best friends face tough challenges. Living on the ever-dangerous streets of Harlem, they confront huge problems like violence, poverty, drug and alcohol abuse, bullies, and “the system” – plus their own fears and doubts. They have each other’s backs – but with all these things working against their hopes and dreams, can they ever really escape the hood? Based on the award-winning novel by Walter Dean Myers, this is a captivating tale about the power of friendship. Street-smart and suspenseful, playful and profound, Darius & Twig is ultimately the story of two young men who must overcome obstacles by finding the best within themselves.

Fundraising and PAC Updates
  • Every Friday during lunch, the Snack Shack will be open. All snacks are $1 or 3 items for $2.50.
  • Please join us on Tuesday, February 13, at Chipotle in University Circle (Uptown) from 4-8 p.m. to get dinner (you can come anytime within that window). 50% of the proceeds from this event will be given back to CLA! When you order, you must say you are there to support CLA or show the flyer.
  • Our next PAC Meeting is on Tuesday, February 27 at 5:00


As always, please reach out with any questions!



Sydney Gruhin